New openings round-up

Healthy on the go brand Pod has made its first move into the West End with an opening on Upper St Martin’s Lane. It opened last Monday (12 September), and marked the launch with a giveaway of 800 lunches in two hours. It is Pod’s 24th location in all, and its second new opening in the last two months. Pod executive chairman John Postlethwaite said: “We are extremely proud of this opening—it is a big step forward for us and we are pleased to finally be answering the demand from our West End customers.”

Street food concept Smokestak is to launch its first permanent site on Sclater Street off Brick Lane in Shoreditch in early November. It has been a popular mobile venture since 2013, especially as part of the Street Feast collectives, and will now take over a two-floor site seating 75 around an open kitchen, with another 30 covers on a terrace and a cellar bar for 15.

Loungers opened its latest new site, the Novello Lounge in Telford, yesterday (21 September). It is a 3,200 square feet unit in Telford’s Southwater Square and is the company’s 14th launch of the year. Loungers has also confirmed Lounge openings before the end of the year in Northampton, Staines, Oldham, Mumbles and Cheadle, plus a new Cosy Club that will open in Liverpool ONE in December.

Local media report that Loungers will also open a Cosy Club at the new Cornhill development in Lincoln.

Be At One has officially opened on Victoria Street I Nottingham. It is the company’s 33rd bar.

Hippo Inns, the managed pubs collaboration between Enterprise Inns and Rupert Clevely, has opened the Islington Townhouse—its sixth site in all.

The Columbo Group brought its total number of venues to ten last week with the opening of the Camden Assembly on Chalk Farm Road, a new live music venue on a site previously run as the Barfly. It is a 400-capacity venue and will have a kitchen residency from burger brand Lucky Chip.

Turtle Bay is preparing to open on the site of the former Tiger Tiger nightclub on the high street in Croydon, local media report. It has started recruiting for the restaurant.

Living Ventures’ The Alchemist will be opening on London Road in Alderley Edge in Cheshire in November.

Cote is to open in Chester next spring, the town’s newspaper reports. It has just received planning permission and has started recruiting. The brand will also open in the new year in Hale in Cheshire after acquiring the Hale Grill, run by Living Ventures.

Wagamama has opened in Peterborough. It is a 130-cover restaurant.

US-based Tex Mex concept Taco Bell has opened in Colchester—its 11th site in the UK and the fourth for its Essex-based franchisee.

Brunning & Price has opened its latest new site in Haighton Green near Preston. It is a redevelopment of Haighton Manor and now has 176 covers, plus 120 more on a terrace and lawns.

Le Comptoir Libanais launched its 12th restaurant on Poland Street in Soho on Tuesday (20 September). It is a 94-cover site and is opening from breakfast. Le Comptoir Libanais has also lined up London openings at John Lewis on Oxford Street in October and Gloucester Road in Kensington in November.

Pizza-and-cider brand The Stable will mark its opening at Guildhall in Exeter next Wednesday (28 September).

Fast-growing US burger brand Five Guys has set 10 October for its new opening on St Nicholas Street in Aberdeen. It has also just applied for permission to open in Exeter, in a unit on Queen Street previously occupied by Ruby’s Modern Diner.

Nando’s has confirmed an opening at the Mayflower retail park in Basildon—its third restaurant in the town’s area.

A new all-day concept specializing in breakfast and brunch called Over Easy has just opened on the corner of Duke Street and Picton Place. It is a new venture from the Breakfast Group and is open from 9am to 8pm in the week. As well as breakfasts, it specializes in cold-pressed juices, speciality coffee and cocktails.

Casual modern Indian restaurant Cinnamon Soho is to reopen on 29 September after a refurbishment. The relaunch will see if open from 9am for breakfast, as well as lunch and dinner.